Consumers aware of MyPlate guidelines: M Booth survey

NEW YORK: Nearly half of American consumers are aware of the US Department of Agriculture MyPlate dietary guidelines, according to a survey from M Booth's Better4You practice.

NEW YORK: Nearly half of American consumers are aware of the US Department of Agriculture MyPlate dietary guidelines, according to a survey from M Booth's Better4You practice.

Twenty-seven percent of respondents said they may adopt the guidelines as part of their regular diet. Rich Goldblatt, SVP and director of M Booth's Better4You practice, said he believes that result is a positive sign.

“I think that we as a country are beginning to get it and we're beginning to follow some of the guidelines that the USDA is laying down,” he said, “I think first lady Michelle Obama is doing a great job in getting consumers to realize they have to eat healthier.”

Out of all the age groups surveyed, the demographic between 16 and 34 years old is twice as likely to adopt healthy eating habits as Americans 55 years and older. Women are also 7% more responsive to MyPlate than men.

MyPlate, which replaced the food pyramid in June, has a simple design that gives food companies the opportunity to promote it on their packages. The goal of the first phase of MyPlate is to promote high-fiber, low-fat, and low-sodium diets and moderate portion sizes to American consumers.

Goldblatt said he thinks social media is “critical” to promoting healthy eating to Americans because the peer-to-peer engagement makes it “more believable” to many consumers.

Companies and brands are also encouraging the new dietary guidelines by lowering sugar and sodium levels in popular food products, he added. However, in the end, “consumers have to be willing to make those sacrifices,” Goldblatt said.

M Booth polled 1,000 Americans age 16 and older this summer for the online survey, which was conducted in partnership with sister consulting and marketing research agency Redshift.

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